Fondue: If you like cheesy...c'mon in


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Do you realize how many hits Jerry's kid had ? Sit down and let me serve some up:

Did his old man commission songwriters for him ? Did he buy radio time for him? I know The Wrecking Crew and some of the other usual suspects were involved---and I'd swear some of it sounds like the same arranger and/or engineer/producer that was working w/ the early Beach Boys.

And accordians and Farfisas (is it, or is it a Vox?)!

And the covers! The COVERs!!! Don't get me started on the covers:

So, there's a template. Now, what's your favorite cheese? Gotta be small "bites" (none over 3 minutes), lots of "calories" (cheeeeeeeezy...but no schmaltz), and it had to be populaire.


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Additional context from Wiki:

The group began life as Gary & the Playboys. Gary Lewis started the band with four friends of his when he was 18. Joking at the lateness of his bandmates to practice, Lewis referred to them as "playboys", and the name stuck.

They auditioned for a job at Disneyland, without telling Disneyland employees about Lewis' celebrity father. They were hired on the spot, audiences at Disneyland quickly accepted them, and the Playboys were soon playing to a full house every night.

Band leader Les Brown had known Jerry Lewis for years, and he told record producer Snuff Garrett that the younger Lewis was playing at Disneyland. After listening to the band, Garrett thought using Gary's famous name might sell more records, and convinced them to add "Lewis" into their name. Garrett took them into a recording studio with the song "This Diamond Ring" in a session financed by Jerry Lewis' wife Patti. However, according to Lewis, the Playboys were not allowed to play their instruments except on the backing tracks. Garrett wanted to maximize the chances for a hit, so he insisted on using experienced session musicians for the overdubs, which included guitar and keyboard solos, additional bass and drum overdubs, and timpani. These musicians included Mike Deasy and Tommy Allsup on guitars, Leon Russell on keyboards, Joe Osborn on bass, and Hal Blaine on drums, members of the larger group known as The Wrecking Crew. Session singer Ron Hicklin did the basic vocal track. Garrett then added Lewis’s voice twice, added some of the Playboys and more of Hicklin. "When I got through, he sounded like Mario Lanza," Garrett commented.

Garrett got airplay in New York City for "This Diamond Ring" by making a deal with WINS disc jockey "Murray the K" Kaufman, who ran a series of all-star concerts at theaters around the New York area, promising that if he played Lewis’ record, the Playboys would do his shows. Garrett then had Jerry Lewis use his contacts to get his son onto The Ed Sullivan Show. However, Sullivan had a general policy that all acts appearing on his show were to perform live. Since so many studio tricks had been used on the record, the Playboys could not re-create its sound. In compromise, Lewis sang along with pre-recorded tracks as the Playboys pretended to play their instruments.[3] The January 1965 broadcast made Gary Lewis and the Playboys instant stars. "This Diamond Ring" went to #1, sold over one million copies by April 1965, and became a gold disc.[4] However, by the end of 1965 only West and Lewis remained in the band. Other later band members included Tommy Tripplehorn (father of actress Jeanne Tripplehorn), Carl Radle (died 1980), Jimmy Karstein, Randy Ruff, Pete Vrains, Bob Simpson, Adolph Zeugner, Les John, Wayne Bruno, and Dave Gonzalez.

Eh, he did did better than Dino, Desi, and Billy.


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Yup, there's a Chuck Barris connection.

Speaking of cheese... I should pair up Lewis w/ Martin again:


Wonder what Wayne thought of that:

But DD&B had another couple of "hits":

Who does this remind you of?

Dino Martin, Desi Arnaz Jr. and Billy Hinsche first met in grammar school. Due to the family connections of Dino and Desi, the band's first audition was for Frank Sinatra, who owned Reprise Records, the recording label for Dean Martin. On most of their records, they did not play their own instruments, but used top session players, producers and songwriters. Producers included Lee Hazlewood, Billy Strange and Jimmy Bowen. Songwriters whose compositions were recorded by the group included Lee Hazlewood, David Gates, Boyce and Hart, Clint Ballard, Jr. and Bonner & Gordon.

Dino, Desi & Billy's best known songs were "I'm a Fool" (1965; U.S. Billboard Hot 100 #17; later covered by Alvin and the Chipmunks for their 1965 album Chipmunks à Go-Go) and "Not the Lovin' Kind" (1965; U.S. #25). Both were hits for the group before any group member had reached the age of 15. Following this success, they toured as an opening act for the Beach Boys in 1965. The group also opened for Paul Revere & the Raiders, Tommy Roe, Sam the Sham, the Lovin' Spoonful and The Mamas & the Papas.

The band did not have a top 40 hit after 1965, despite releasing records for five years thereafter. The group's contributions to music history have been met with critically mixed reactions. Respected critic Richie Unterberger describes the band as a group that "never had an ounce of credibility", with music that was "innocuously bland in the extreme, making The Monkees...sound positively innovative and hard-nosed in comparison." He further contends that the resources devoted to Dino, Desi & Billy in an effort to make them successful took away valuable support needed by other bands at the time, such as label mates The Kinks: Dino, Desi & Billy "took away valuable air time and sales from much better groups that really needed it, in an era in which chart considerations were much more vital to ensure an ongoing career." These sentiments may be contrasted with the fact that the band was well thought of by the Beach Boys, to the extent that Brian Wilson co-wrote with Billy Hinsche - his brother-in-law - one of the band's original songs, and their final single, "Lady Love".]

The group released one album in 1965 and three albums in 1966. In contrast to the albums of other pop artists at that time, Dino, Desi & Billy albums contained primarily cover versions of Top 40 songs made popular by others, with original content being minor. The three boys make an appearance in the Dean Martin Film Murderers' Row and sing the Boyce & Hart song, "If You're Thinkin' What I'm Thinkin''". From 1966 to 1970, the group continued to release singles, encountering marginal success, which was not altered by a change of label to Columbia Records in 1969. Also in 1969, the group contributed three songs to the soundtrack of the surf film Follow Me. The group received top billing on the soundtrack album, despite the fact that most of the album featured music by composer Stu Phillips. Later in 1969, the group broke up, due in part to Desi joining his mother's television show and Hinsche wishing to commence university studies. The group's last single, "Lady Love", was released by Reprise Records in 1970, after the group had broken up.

*Another band that kept The Wrecking Crew busy.
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I remember all of these songs from back in the day...pretty interesting story(s). Thanks for sharing these.

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